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Alberta to institute changes to economic immigration program

Policies regarding immigration are influenced a great deal by the labour needs and economic status of a province. In Alberta, the economic immigration program called the Alberta Immigrant Nominee Program (AINP) is being simplified to allow for increased efficiency to better serve Alberta's growing economy. The goal of this simplification is to allow employers and workers an easier path through the provincial system in response to increasing labour market needs.

Currently, there are multiple AINP streams and subcategories. Starting January 2, these will be consolidated. In the simplified system, applicants will need to show they have a job that an Alberta resident could not fill. The reformed immigration program will include yearly caps on applicants based on sector and occupation in order to distribute workers effectively. The number of total nominations will remain capped at 5,500 and will not increase as a result of this change.

Alberta faces several labour market shortages that can be filled through immigration. Sectors expected to be in need by 2025 include nursing, medical technology, computer and information systems, construction, and transportation management. Despite the changes to this provincial system, the overall immigration system continues to be controlled and legislated by the federal government.

The immigration system in Alberta is affected both by federal policy and by provincial programs such as the AINP. There are many legal considerations that prospective immigrants or those concerned about their status may face. Those who have questions about how the new and traditional laws in Alberta may affect personal immigration issues or disputes should contact a lawyer.

Source: edmontonjournal.com, "Alberta announces economic immigration process improvements", Hina Alam, Oct. 20, 2017

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